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bet. He can hear with understanding much that is said, and comprehends the duty of obedience. He knows the effect of heat and cold, and many of the mechanical properties of the atmosphere. Trees and herbs and flowers are distinguished; birds and beasts are recognized, and all sensible objects draw forth questions which display observation and reflection; and, in fact, he acts intelligently upon a great variety of ideal objects. He can appreciate moral precepts, and understands the difference between kindness, honesty and truth, and fraud, deceit and profanity. In fact, many of the intellectual habits of life are formed in childhood; and what he learns of useful truths and their practical application often exercises an influence for good or evil over his subsequent conduct. This is the natural method adopted by Froebel for training children, and consists in learning the reality of things.


Philosophy teaches that mental perceptions depend upon the senses, and that the faculty of understanding objective phenomena is in the mind. Without the senses no object would come into the mind, and without the mind no object would be understood by the senses. latter can not think, and the former can not perceive. In no other way than by the united operation of both can knowledge arise. We can thus acknowledge the elements contributed by each to our improvement, and that no use of the understanding is possible until it can represent itself in the different objects upon which the hand of labor is employed; for the mere existence of an idea or thought never give birth to a concrete form corresponding to it, except by the aid of manual skill. This is the condition upon which all improvement or progress depends, and


would seem to suggest the adequate preparation of both sense and mind for the common work. Such, however, has not been the course of education. Thought requires the power of language to express its intelligence, and without words spoken or written, mental operations, it has been held, would have no mode of representation; and it is upon the co-activity of these faculties-thought and language—alone that education has mainly concerned itself. The whole system has, therefore, mostly been the education in language. This partial and one-sided method overlooks the simple fact that words are but the symbols of realities; whereas our vague and indefinite impressions become fixed and palpable only through the employment of manual skill and mechanical art, by which also the imagination, the memory, invention, and emotion, manifest their marvelous and enduring effects. To convey the images of external things to the mental faculties, and to work out the thoughts created in the mind, is the mission of our physical organs. Thus it is that there is carried on between the external and the internal a perpetual correspondence, and the work goes on inside and outside much of the time quite independently of our wishes or our feelings. This mutual relation is upon the principle that whatever adds to the improvement and strength of one will fortify and elevate the other. The eyes and the fingers translate the works of the spirit, and mingle with its thought in the form of useful and beautiful objects. This is the lesson of things which play nearly the whole rôle of human experience. Figures, the stars, music, and all sensible objects, are means of sensible information. What would the eye of the astronomer be worth, unless trained to watch the heavens with

an artificial vision to which that of the eagle can not be compared? What would geometry profit if we could. handle nothing solid, round, square, or in some other form besides the lines and curves which the eye alone can perceive? What effect would music have upon the soul were it not for the harmonious quality of the ear? Or, how could we learn anything of botany without going among the herbs and visiting the trees? There are no formal lessons in this, little or no didactic teaching. Objects are conveyed to the intelligence which excite reflection and thought, and these again are wrought by the skill of man's physical powers into all the multitudinous utilities of practical life. Does not this community of labor suggest equality of education? A cultivation obtained at the expense of one half of the faculties which are no less important in working out our life, is a vain effort at the perfection of our nature. A culture gained in one respect by the sacrifice of all else can never be anything but a failure, for it is a serious drawback to the educational system, and to the mind itself which receives this preference.

The metaphysicians tell us that the world is governed by ideas. This is a pleasing metaphor for the suggestions of philosophy. Common sense teaches that ideas have little potency until they are incarnated in deeds by the industrious hand of man. The bare idea of steam expansion hobbled along for thousands of years, until the engine of Watt converted it into the greatest power that ever swayed the world. So of the steamboat, the locomotive, the cotton-gin, the power-loom, and hundreds of other inventions that have revolutionized society, and in which practical mechanics have won a herculean victory




almost single-handed and alone. The essence of power exists in the mind, but without any showing or influence when it lacks executive capacity, which dwells in the organs of the physical frame, and above all in the arm, the hand, and the technic skill of the fingers.

Man is a living force, a fountain of ideas. The organs of the physical frame correspond to those of his mind, and are parts of the same equipment. He has two arms and hands and eyes, and the conception of power without them is weakness. Thoughts are demonstrated by deeds, and the hands and arms are the instruments which redeem this weakness and give us the idea embodied in experience.

The hand is a remarkable example of sinewy power and muscular delicacy of touch, and when its skill coordinates with the eye and the will, many of its acts impress us with profound admiration. It produces results so fine and delicate, that it seems as if the spirit itself passed into the variously-formed objects of its exquisite perfections.

The hand intellectualizes the body. In a certain sense the mind itself is dependent upon it. All fineness of work comes from its sublime possibilities for high labor. Everything that proceeds out of the infinite delicacy of our nature requires its service.

We are indebted to the eye for the perception of external objects in regard to form and color. The hand also aids the eye to attain the same end, and while the eye is situated to insure the widest range of sight, the hand is docile to the command of the mind, and combines and transforms its ideas and sentiments into visible objects. In instrumental music it exercises.

"The matchless skill, the potent art that brings Voices of earth or heaven from those mute strings." Says a recent writer: "So much does the power and dominion of man over inferior animals, crude materials, and natural forces depend upon the hand that, were it possible to deprive the human race of this important member and put in its stead a mere paw or hoof, it might well be asserted that man would soon find a common level with the beasts, notwithstanding his superior intellect.”

This extract illustrates in a striking manner the condition we should be in without the use of this member of our body. Man would be worse off than a savage and more imbecile than the beasts. With its aid the mind subdues the ferocities of nature to the wants of the spirit. It is the symbol of man's power, for while the head wears the crown the hand holds the scepter. The ancients endowed it with intelligent qualities, and foretold the future by its inspection-the gift of prophecy. It grasps all instru· ments for our progress, from the pen to the plowshare. Its wonderful precision, quickness, dexterity, and discrimi nation come from an anatomical organization of muscles, levers and pulleys which enables it to perform its numberless operations in the service of man. The finest machinery and inventions fall short of its cunning; and without its ingenious manipulations the comforts of civilized life would disappear out of the industries of mankind. It has even a language of its own. Says Montaigne: "Would you think it? With our very hands we require, promise, call, dismiss, threaten, supplicate, deny, interrogate, admire, number, confer, repent, fear, confound, doubt, instruct, command, incite, encourage, swear, testify, accuse, condemn, absolve, affront, despise, defy, provoke, flatter,

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